TRANSFORMING MUSIC

20100428 BMA Don Laka making his maiden speech. He is the  chairperson of the newly formed Downtown Music Hub formerly Downtown Studios in Johannesburg. the announcement was made by Minister of Art and Culture Lulu Xingwane. The historic Downtown Studios were bought just over a year ago by the then Minister Pallo Jordan with the intention to develop the iconic building into a state of the art facility. PIC: BAFANA MAHLANGU. 28/04/2010. © SOWETAN
20100428 BMA Don Laka making his maiden speech. He is the chairperson of the newly formed Downtown Music Hub formerly Downtown Studios in Johannesburg. the announcement was made by Minister of Art and Culture Lulu Xingwane. The historic Downtown Studios were bought just over a year ago by the then Minister Pallo Jordan with the intention to develop the iconic building into a state of the art facility. PIC: BAFANA MAHLANGU. 28/04/2010. © SOWETAN

THE much-anticipated launch of the Downtown Music Hub has brought a mixed bag of people from the cultural sector on to its board.

THE much-anticipated launch of the Downtown Music Hub has brought a mixed bag of people from the cultural sector on to its board.

Last week Minister of Arts and Culture Lulu Xingwana confirmed the board members.

Musician Don Laka is chairperson and his deputy is choral music expert Lindumuzi Mngoma. The rest of the board members are Yvonne Chaka Chaka, music professor Hotep Galata, unionist Oupa Lebogo, veteran radio personality Greg Maloka and Nothemba Mlonzi.

The department bought the historic Downtown Studios just more than a year ago. The intention is to develop this iconic building and its facilities into a state-of-the-art music production hub that will produce South African and African music.

"Music plays an important part in the social and economic development of our country. More importantly, music is at the core of our national consciousness as one of the pillars of nation building and social cohesion," Xingwana said.

"Though the industry is growing, structurally it is not yet transformed. It is still characterised by the dominance of a few companies, especially in areas of production, mastering, manufacturing, warehousing and distribution.

"This forms strong barriers against local producers entering these territories.

"By deploying initiatives such as the Downtown Music Hub it is the government's intention to stimulate local industry to redress this imbalance and transform the industry to play a bigger economic role in the development of South Africa."

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